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Posts Tagged ‘NIC Teaming’

Hyper-V Windows 2012 : High Availability and Resiliency : new enhancements

June 28, 2012 Leave a comment

There are a number of new enhancements that ensure key workloads are resilient, and protected.

Hyper-V ReplicaAsynchronous, application-consistent virtual machine replication and it does not depend on any hardware vendor. You can establish an Hyper-V Replica between 2 separated physical locations without a storage. It permits asynchronous replication of Hyper-V virtual machines between two locations for business continuity and failure recovery.

Incremental BackupsTrue differential disk backups of virtual hard disks to help ensure that the data is backed up and restored when necessary. It also reduces storage costs because it backs up only what has changed, not the entire disk.

NIC TeamingProvides increased reliability and performance for virtual machines and now does not depends on manufacturer drivers.

Hyper-V Clustering Enhancements – Unmatched scale and flexibility for virtualized infrastructures:

Unmatched Scale – Windows Server 2012 support up to 64 physical nodes and up to 4,000 virtual machines in a single cluster providing scalability and flexibility for key virtualized workloads.

Flexible Virtual Machine Guest Clustering – Provides not only iSCSI guest clustering support, including MPIO, but also enables the use of Virtual Fibre Channel adapters within the virtual machine allowing workloads access to storage area networks using fiber channel fabric. In addition, a virtual fibre channel enables IT to cluster guest operating systems over Fibre Channel providing HA for workloads within VMs and utilize the built-in Windows multi-path I/O (MPIO) for high-availability and load balancing on the storage path.  By employing MPIO and Failover Clustering together as complimentary technologies, users are able to mitigate the risk of a system outage at both the hardware and application levels.

Highly Secure Clustered Storage – Hyper-V, Failover Clustering and BitLocker now work in concert to create the ideal and secure platform for private cloud infrastructure. Windows Server 2012 Cluster disks that are encrypted using BitLocker Drive Encryption enable better physical security for deployments outside secure data centers, providing a critical safeguard for the cloud and helping protect against inadvertent data leaks

Enhanced Cluster Shared Volumes – Cluster Shared Volume 2.0 (CSV). CSV has been greatly enhanced in a number of ways. From a usability standpoint, CSV is now a core Failover Clustering feature, with simplified administration and management.  To support up to 64 nodes in a cluster, CSV has been improved in aspects of both performance and scalability. In terms of integrating with our partners, CSV has specifically been enhanced to work out of the box with storage filter drivers such as those used by: anti-virus, data protection, backup and storage replication ensuring a more seamless integration with existing investments.

3 Levels of Availability – Bringing higher availability to workloads that do not support clustering. It does this by providing a light-weight, simple solution to monitor applications running in the VMs and integrating with the host. By monitoring services and event logs inside the virtual machine, Hyper-V and Failover Clustering can detect whether the key services that a virtual machine provides are healthy and provide automatic corrective action such as restarting the virtual machine or restarting a service within the VM.  This is in addition to the already existing virtual machine failover capabilities should a host fail, or the virtual machine itself become unresponsive.

Cluster-Aware Updating – An in-box end-to-end solution for updating Windows Server 2012 Hyper-V Failover Clusters, helping customers to preview, apply, and report on updates, all with zero downtime to the virtual machines.

Virtual Machine Failover Prioritization –  Virtual machine priorities can now be configured to control the order in which specific virtual machines failover or start. This ensures higher priority virtual machines are given the resources they need and lower priority virtual machines are given resources as they are available.

Affinity (and Anti-Affinity) Virtual Machine Rules – Administrators can now configure partnered virtual machines so that at failover, the partnered machines are migrated simultaneously. For example, administrators can configure their SharePoint virtual machine and the partnered SQL Server virtual machine to always failover together to the same node. Administrators can also specify that two specific virtual machines cannot coexist on the same node in a failover scenario.

How Does VmWare compare?

Capability Windows   Server 2012 Hyper-V

VMware   ESXi 5.0

VMware   vSphere 5.0 Enterprise Plus
 Incremental   Backups

 Yes

No

Yes

 VM   Replication

 Yes

 No

vCenter SRM

 NIC   Teaming

 Yes

 Yes

Yes

 Integrated   High Availability

 Yes

 No

 Yes

 Guest OS   Application Monitoring

 Yes

N/A

 No

 Cluster-Aware   Updating

 Yes

N/A

Yes

Failover   Prioritization

Yes

 N/A

 Yes

Affinity   & Anti-Affinity Rules

Yes

N/A

Yes

What are you waiting for? start today your own POC of Windows 2012 !

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Windows Server 2012/R2 and NIC teaming modes and how to

April 2, 2012 8 comments

NIC teaming, the new feature of Windows 2012/R2, allows multiple network adapters on a computer to be placed into a team for the following purposes:

  • Bandwidth aggregation

– Traffic failover to prevent connectivity loss in the event of a network component failure

Modes:

  • Generic or static teaming (IEEE 802.3ad draft v1): This mode requires configuration on the switch and the computer to identify which links form the team. Because this is a statically configured solution, no additional protocol assists the switch and the computer to identify incorrectly plugged cables or other errors that could cause the team to fail. This mode is typically supported by server-class switches.
  • Dynamic teaming (IEEE 802.1ax, LACP): IEEE 802.1ax uses the Link Aggregation Control Protocol (LACP) to dynamically identify links between the computer and a specific switch. This enables the automatic creation of a team and, in theory, the expansion and reduction of a team simply by the transmission or receipt of LACP from the peer network adapter. Typical server-class switches support IEEE 802.1ax, but most switches require manual administration to enable LACP on the port.
  • Switch independent: do not require that the team members connect to different switches, they merely make it possible.

Characteristics:

  • It is manageable through both PowerShell and the GUI
  • Supported on various NIC types/vendors
  • You can team up to 32 NICs
  • Unlimited virtual interfaces
  • Multiple teaming modes
  • NIC teams can only be formed between homogenous NICs. So two 1GB NICs can be teamed, or two 10GB NICs can be teamed, but you cannot team a 1GB and 10GB NIC.
  • If the individual NIC  support Receive Side Scaling (RSS), the NIC team also supports RSS. Hence it is a good idea to team NICs  that support RSS. The resulting NIC team is also highly capable and does not lose any functionality.
  • If the individual NIC  supports RDMA, the resulting NIC team does NOT support RDMA. Given how Windows 8 SMB 2.2 natively supports RDMA without modifying applications, it is a bad idea to team NICs with RDMA capabilities, and where the interconnect (routers, etc) also supports RDMA

How to:

Using Powershell:

  • Static

New-NetLbfoTeam -Name “Team-Static” -TeamMembers NIC1,NIC2 -TeamingMode Static

  • Dynamic

New-NetLbfoTeam -Name “Team-Static” -TeamMembers NIC1,NIC2 -TeamingMode Lacp

  • Switch Independent

New-NetLbfoTeam -Name “Team-Independent” -TeamMembers NIC1,NIC2 –TeamingMode SwitchIndependent

More Power Shell Commands:

  • To get the Teaming proprieties and settings in PowerShell:

Get-NetLbfoTeam

  • To get all of the PowerShell commands available for NetLBFO

Get-Command -Module NetLbfo

Using GUI:

  1. Open Server Manager.
  2. In the console tree, click Local Server.
  3. In the details pane, in the Properties section, click NIC Teaming Administration under Remote Desktop.
  4. In the NIC Teaming Window, select the NIC’s to team on the bottom right on the screen
  5. Right click and select add to new team
  6. In the new team window, provide the name of the nic team(e.g. team-static)
  7. Expand the additional properties and select the team mode
  8. click OK to finalise and create the nic team.

Now you are ready to create the Hyper-v Network Switch by using the NIC team.

 

Windows 8 Server : native support for NIC Teaming

September 16, 2011 1 comment

Windows 8 will come with native NIC Teaming, which means that we don’t need to pre-install or configure any software provided by the NIC vendor for the NIC TEAMING work.

Now you can team 2 or more NIC’s even if they are from different vendors configured as NIC Teaming and better, you can expose that NIC to Hyper-V Virtual Machines. This is really cool and one of the most wanted features.

The scenarios for application of the feature in production are infinite now, especially In High Availability environments. But please be aware that is the preview version! Much more still to come!

As an example, I installed Windows 8 with the NIC teaming configured using the Wireless NIC and the Wired NIC, then I went to the Hyper-V Manager and I created an Virtual Switch pointing to the NIC Team. How cool is that?